CHICAGO – The Chicago Cubs today placed outfielder Alfonso Soriano on the 15-day disabled list with a minimally displaced fracture of his left fourth metacarpal in his left hand and optioned right-handed pitcher Kevin Hart to Triple-A Iowa. The Cubs recalled infielders Micah Hoffpauir and Eric Patterson from Triple-A.

Hoffpauir and Patterson both begin their second stints with the Cubs this season and are available for this afternoon’s game against the Atlanta Braves at Wrigley Field.

The 28-year-old Hoffpauir was first recalled from Iowa on May 18 and batted .421 (8-for-19) with three doubles and one RBI in 11 games with the Cubs. The left-handed hitter batted .500 (4-for-8) with a double, three runs scored and one RBI in his final three games before being optioned to Triple-A on June 3. In 16 games with Iowa this season, he is batting .306 (19-for-62) with four doubles, three home runs and 15 RBI.

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Hoffpauir last season batted a career-best .319 (99-for-310) with 24 doubles, 16 home runs and 73 RBI in 82 games with Iowa to earn Pacific Coast League All-Star honors.

Patterson returns to the Cubs after batting .326 (59-for-181) with 13 doubles, three triples, five home runs, 27 runs scored and 26 RBI in 47 games with Iowa this season. He posted a .361 on-base percentage and a .514 slugging percentage. The 25-year-old was first recalled this season by the Cubs on April 16 and went hitless in six at-bats before returning to Iowa three days later. The left-handed hitter made his major league debut last season and saw action in seven games, going 2-for-8 (.250) with one double.

Soriano endured the minimally displaced fracture of his left fourth metacarpal last night when hit by a pitch in the bottom of the second inning. He is batting .283 (60-for-212) with 11 doubles, 15 home runs and 40 RBI in 51 games for the Cubs this season. Soriano returns to the disabled list for the second time this year, as he was sidelined for 15 days from April 16-30 with a right calf strain.

Hart is 2-1 with a 6.62 ERA (13 ER/17.2 IP) in 12 relief appearances covering two stints with the Cubs this season. He is 1-1 with a 3.81 ERA (11 ER/26.0 IP) in six appearances, all starts, with Triple-A Iowa this year.

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids and helps people protect their assets as an independent insurance agent. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail